Like everything else, gardens can come in all sizes. The smallest one is where all sorts of small plants are planted in old dishes with holes at the bottom or in baskets which can be hung or in containers known as window boxes. This sort of a garden is maintained probably because of the lack of a larger space. Therefore, not much would be required in the way of gardening supplies.
In contrast are the small gardens with just 2 or 3 different plants on display, while the largest ones exhibit an assorted variety of plants which can survive for two or three seasons. The gardening supplies to be purchased would depend on the type and size of the garden.
Now, the complete novice who has just begun to experiment with a “garden” is totally clueless where gardening supplies are concerned! The thought of purchasing even some basic supplies like good soil, tools to be used in the garden, some pots for the plants, or fertilizer may send them into a tizzy! Items displayed in a store stocking gardening items and catalogues listing gardening supplies convey nothing to them!
An experienced gardener would visit the local center that stocked gardening supplies before going in for catalogues. There could be just one center present, supplying everything from the oldest to the latest. Or there could be several. It all depends on how large or small the community is.
The staff employed in these local centers is trained to understand the difference between a garden and a farm. So they are the right people to give advice on why certain items are not suitable for a garden in that particular area. Knowledge about which plants are the most suitable, the correct time to plant them and appropriate gardening supplies to purchase, is also provided by them. Do you really need to go in for catalogues then?
Yet, there are those who refuse to depend on local centers and concentrate on the annual catalogues. They believe that the advantage lies in the fact that a single catalogue covers an entire range of plants unlike a local store. What these gardeners fail to understand is that climatic conditions in a particular area may or may not prove suitable for the growth of all plants, especially a place with a cold climate.
The catalogues advertising gardening supplies keep updating themselves regarding newer products. Each one tries to do a better job of advertising these products than the other, making the advertisements slick and glossy enough to attract customers. Since these new catalogues are mailed out to experienced gardeners at the start of every year, they can plan well ahead for the year ahead. Of course, these gardeners are mature enough to realize that everything that is advertised need not come with a guarantee!